On 23 February 2022, the European Commission published its draft Data Act (the Act). The aim of the Act is to “ensure fairness in the digital environment, stimulate a competitive data market, open opportunities for data-driven innovation and make data more accessible for all”. At this stage, it is unclear when the Act will finally be approved, but once it is there will be a 12-month implementation period before it comes into force.
The Act is wide ranging in its scope. It addresses issues such as data sharing, international transfers of data, ease of switching between service providers, and public sector access to data. If the Act is passed, it will inevitably increase the compliance burden on companies operating in the European Union (the EU). However, it should also provide increased opportunity to use data in a way that drives innovation and increases revenues.
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